Date written: 17.05.2016
Let's go back to November 2015. I was in Germany, I had just got back from being in hospital for a week, I was super ill, and unsure of what to do. Right before this, my amazing trainer found a wonderful horse for me. A big, black oldenburg gelding, who's name we didn't know, so we called him Black Beauty. After I got admitted, I figured my chances of getting him were slim. Until my birthday, November 17th when my parents agreed to buy him, and suddenly I owned my dream horse.
The start wasn't easy. I was sick to the extent where I slept 15-20 hours a day and lived in a lot of pain, with no energy. The first month, I hardly rode him because of my health. But in January 2016 I started riding him again. He was super spooky, alert and fresh. It wasn't easy, and in the start every day was a struggle cause I felt ill, and he felt fresh and scared.
But as the weeks and months passed, we started figuring eachother out. In January, after 2 lessons in Norway, we went to our first show were we had 4 faults in the 1m, and 4 faults in the 1.10m. This was my first time jumping this height in over a year and a half, and with that he started building up my confidence and hopes again.
As the time went by, I felt a bit better, Santo got in better shape, and we started to really become a team. In our second show, february 2016, we did our first 1.15m with 4 faults and got 4th in the 1.05m with a double clear. In our 3rd show, March 2016, we got our first double clear in 1.10m, and finished as first unplaced in both of our classes.
Our 4th show was also our first outdoor show, where we had some lovely rounds and did our first 1.20m class together. I could hardly believe it, but I didn't feel scared or nervous, I didn't panic or freak out, even when jumping bigger- because he's given me so much confidence, and really allowed me to learn how to ride.
Between the shows, we have of course had hundreds of rides at home, a few jumping lessons, and lots of hours together. I couldn't have asked for a better horse, cause he's got it all: looks, kindness, gaits, jump, confidence, and a heart of gold. These 6 months he's been the light of my life, and I don't know what I'd do without my big goof. Thank you Santo for these 6 months, may there be many more.
Date written: 14.05.2016
As you can read below, I bought Cara unseen 10th of May and picked her up. I rode her 11th, 12th and 13th at home, and because of Santo's wound, I couldn't take him to the national show 14-16th of May like planned. I had never jumped Cara before, but I still decided to wing it, be a bit crazy, and take her to the show instead of Santo!
Since I had never jumped her, I went into the warmup early and schooled her a bit around. She felt fab and was very calm for herself to be, so I was looking forward to our first class, a 90 cm speed class with a jump off.
I warmed her up, and she was still pretty nice and calm and didn't leap around as much as she did at home, and jumping her was so fun! I let her go forward to avoid as much leaping and bunny hopping as I could, which worked pretty well. As we got called into the arena, I tried to keep her calm before I started cantering and approached the first fence. To be short- it felt amazing and so fun, and before I knew it we had entered the jump off and I thought of my turns, but I didn't take the crazy shortcuts, cause afterall I was on a new horse I had never jumped before. But 14 fences later we crossed the finish line with a double clear, and a decent time that gave us a 5th place out of 26! Yay! I was so proud and happy, she felt so great and I felt like I was made for riding her.
After the 90cm we did the 1m class, who was another speed class with a jump off. Here she jumped even better, and I felt like I managed to ride her well here too, and I still enjoyed it as much as I did the first round. Sadly I held her a bit too much going to fence 7/8 in the 1st phase, and she touched the pole; and as we cantered on it fell down 3 strides later. Very unlucky, but that's our sport- regardless I couldn't stop smiling that day..
Because 1- Cara felt amazing to jump, 2- I felt like I was made to ride her, 3- we had a great teamwork and 4- we even managed to get placed in our first show, after 3 days of riding and never jumping her!
Date written: 11.05.2016
As the opportunity to get a second horse came- it didn't take me long before I started horse searching. (Lets be honest here, I started looking long before I knew I could have one...) I had a few candidates, but with a budget and some solid criterias (age, height, experience) it wasn't the easiest. The horse that caught my eye first among all of the ads though, was a little bay mare.
A few stressful weeks later, everything was finally sorted and 2 days later our newest team member arrived! I couldn't keep it a secret anymore- so the day we signed the contract and transfered the money I made a little youtube video revealing it, which can be seen here:
And 10th of may, she arrived. To share everything with you guys, I decided to vlog from the day she arrived to the day I first rode her- which was today (11th of May). You can read more about her under the my horses section.
We quickly noticed how nice and sweet she was to handle. She loves to cuddle, loves to be scratched, went really nicely with the other horses and were generally just very simple and kind to be around which is a big plus. I pulled out some of my old pony tack, and we went for our first ride. She hacked really nicely on the road despite some light traffic and lots of "scary things" to look at.
When I started riding, I quickly noticed how feisty she was under saddle. A dancing pony is a good way to express it, she pranced around with her head high, knees lifted high and with a high spirit. I quickly managed to relax her more in trot, but as we started cantering I noticed that she loved to run sideways, to leap and do everything but relaxing. I let her go as she wanted to, and stayed calm to help her relax.
I attempted some transitions with her, which wasn't the easiest thing but a calm rider and lots of small detail work resulted in a very nice and "relaxed" horse at the end. Keep in min this was my first time ever sitting on her, and she's obviously very different to Santo!
But I surely enjoyed to ride her, and I am super excited for the future with her. I really believe she's a star in the making and once I figure her out and manage to relax her more, she'll be gold. Enjoy the vlog from when I got her to after I rode her, including 3-4 minutes of riding clips!
Date written: 08.05.2016
30th of April it was finally time for our first outdoor show, and with nice weather and a great horse like always, I felt excited and ready for this! It started off on saturday where I rode 1m and 1.10m. The 1m was a style class, but I figured early in the round that it wasn't going to be very stylish as Santo was a bit spooky and I failed to follow him over a jump. Still, we ended up with a clear round and 71 style points, and a first unplaced (6th).
In the 1.10m I managed to ride better, but we had a unlucky pole down in the 1st phase which was a bit gutting as he felt great and I felt ready for the jump off, but regardless we had a good round with a nice rhythm and he jumped well!
Sunday may 1st was a new show day, with 1.10m and our first 1.20m on the plan. I felt very ready and confident for stepping up a level. In the 1.10m we had a very nice round with a good forward pace, we hit most of the distances nicely and he jumped good, but we also had a pole down in the 1st phase here. Not too important as I had a good feeling and he was positive!
After that our first 1.20m came up next. The course was nice but long, and after a nice warm up we stepped into the arena. I must admit, personally I think this was one of our best rounds so far as I managed to stay confident. It was really fun and I enjoyed all of it, but I think Santo was simply exhausted after jumping big courses in our lesson on tuesday, 2 rounds on saturday and a 1.10m class before this so we ended up wit 4 down, 16 faults. 2 of them were my fault where I put him a bit close, but I'd say they were more unlucky than anything. It doesn't matter as much as he jumped well, stayed positive, I rode in a good rhythm and with confidence so despite the faults I'm very happy with our first 1.20m!